(Click on the photos for a larger image.)
Much to the relief of New Jerseyans, the worst of the endless winter weather appears to have left the region. The current long-range forecast does not show any temperatures below freezing for the next ten days. Spring migration is finally beginning its crescendo to May.
Anyone out in the field the past few days saw timely arrivals such as Brown Thrashers, Blue-gray Gnatcatchers, Louisiana Waterthrushes, Ruby-crowned Kinglets, Purple Martins, Broad-winged Hawks, American Bitterns, etc., etc.
At Deerhaven Lake, today, most of the approximately twenty-six Great Blue Heron nests were involved with incubation. While scanning the nests, a creature not looking anything like the other Great Blue Herons was seen in a nest below another heron nest.
This snag duplex apartment has a Great Horned Owl with at least one owlet in the lower unit, and a Great Blue Heron nest in the penthouse, not to mention numerous heron nests in the immediate area. It seems like they are coexisting peacefully.
The young owlet with its parent is in the photo below. As always, click on the photo for a larger image.
Deerhaven Lake is part of the Newark Watershed. A permit issued by the Watershed is necessary to enter the area.
Ducks are still numerous at the lake. Nearly 60 Ring-necked Ducks were present with 10 Green-winged Teal, 4 Bufflehead, 2 American Wigeon along with the resident 42+ Wood Ducks and a pair of nesting Pied-billed Grebes.
Earlier, an altercation between the two raptors in the photos below made for some interesting nature notes. The Osprey grabbed a fish one-hundred feet in front of this observer. It lifted out of the water and almost immediately dropped the fish because a Bald Eagle was about to take it for a ride. The eagle showed no interest in the fish and seemed only intent on chasing the Osprey out of its space.
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